Tags: | Barack Obama | Supreme Court | mitch mcconnell | obama | SCOTUS | presidential

McConnell: Obama Picked SCOTUS Nominee to Influence Presidential Race

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By    |   Wednesday, 16 Mar 2016 12:40 PM

President Barack Obama has named his choice to replace late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia for political reasons, not to see a nominee confirmed, and it all goes against what his own Vice President Joe Biden said during a similar situation when he led the Senate Judiciary Committee back in 1992, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell insisted on Wednesday.

"The nation would have to pay for what would surely be a bitter fight no matter how good a person is nominated by the president," the Kentucky Republican said on the Senate floor, calling for the American people to be able to have input into the next Supreme Court justice, and that the Senate leadership would not plan hearings for Obama's nominee, U.S. Court of Appeals Court Judge Merrick Garland.

And in 1992, Biden, then a Democratic senator from Delaware, said the cost to the nation would be "too great, no matter who the president nominates," said McConnell. In that incident, Biden said the Senate's then-Democratic majority should not consider hearings until the political campaign season was over, when a vacancy developed in the final year of President George H.W. Bush's final term.

"The Biden rule reminds us the decision, which was announced weeks ago, remains about a principle and not a person," said McConnell. "It seems clear President Obama made this nomination not with the intent of seeing the nominee confirmed, but in order to politicize it for purposes of the election which is the type of thing Judiciary Committee Chairman Joe Biden was concerned about."

House Speaker Paul Ryan said he agreed with McConnell, Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, and others who oppose the nomination.

"This has never been about who the nominee is," said the Wisconsin Republican. "It is about a basic principle. Under our Constitution, the president has every right to make this nomination, and the Senate has every right not to confirm a nominee. I fully support Leader McConnell and Chairman Grassley's decision not to move forward with the confirmation process. We should let the American people decide the direction of the court."

Ohio Sen. Rob Portman issued the following statement on President Obama's nomination to the Supreme Court:

"As I have said previously, I believe it is better for the country to allow the American people to have a voice in this debate. We are in the midst of a highly-charged presidential election that is less than eight months away, and this lifetime appointment could reshape the Supreme Court for generations. I believe the best thing for the country is to trust the American people and allow them to weigh in on this issue. This is the same position that Vice President Biden and Senators Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer have outlined in the past.

"This is about the principle, not the person. I believe that awaiting the result of a democratic election, rather than having a nomination fight in this partisan election-year environment, will give the nominee more legitimacy and better preserve the Court's credibility as an institution. After the election, I look forward to considering the nominee of our new president. Whether the American people elect a Republican or Democrat, I will judge his or her nominee on the merits, as I always have."

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President Barack Obama has named his choice to replace late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia for political reasons, not to see a nominee confirmed, and it all goes against what his own Vice President Joe Biden said during a similar situation when he led the Senate...
mitch mcconnell, obama, SCOTUS, presidential, merrick garland, judge
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2016-40-16
Wednesday, 16 Mar 2016 12:40 PM
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